• WordNet 3.6
    • n Pharisee a member of an ancient Jewish sect noted for strict obedience to Jewish traditions
    • n pharisee a self-righteous or sanctimonious person
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Pharisee făr"ĭ*sē One of a sect or party among the Jews, noted for a strict and formal observance of rites and ceremonies and of the traditions of the elders, and whose pretensions to superior sanctity led them to separate themselves from the other Jews.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n pharisee One of an ancient Jewish school, sect, or party which was specially exact in its interpretation and observance of the law, both canonical and traditional. In doctrine the Pharisees held to the resurrection of the body, the existence of angels and spirits, the providence and decrees of Cod, the canonicity and authority of Scripture, and the authority of ecclesiastical tradition; politically they were intensely Jewish, though not constituting a distinct political party; morally they were scrupulous in the observance of the ritual and regulations of the law, both written and oral. The Pharisees antagonized John Hyrcanus I. (135-105 b. c.), and as religious reformers bitterly opposed the corruptions which had entered Judaism from the pagan religions. They were called Separatists by their opponents. In support, of the authority of the law, and to provide for the many questions which it did not directly answer, they adopted the theory of an oral tradition given by God to Moses.
    • n pharisee Any scrupulous or ostentatious observer of the outward forms of religion without regard to its inward spirit: a formalist; hence, a scrupulous observer of external forms of any kind; in general, a hypocrite.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Pharisee far′i-sē one of a religious school among the Jews, marked by their strict observance of the law and of religious ordinances: any one more careful of the outward forms than of the spirit of religion, a formalist
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. Pharisaeus, Gr. Farisai^os, from Heb. pārash, to separate
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Late L. pharisæus—Gr. pharisaios—Heb. pārūsh, separated from, parash, to separate.


In literature:

For a middle-aged Pharisee with the gout I'm incurably romantic.
"The Highgrader" by William MacLeod Raine
The priests and Pharisees listened eagerly.
"King of the Jews" by William T. Stead
And when the Pharisee saw it, he marvelled that he had not first washed before dinner.
"The Mistakes of Jesus" by William Floyd
At Daniel's request I read the parable of the Pharisee and Publican, and commented on it.
"Old Daniel" by Thomas Hodson
The scribes and Pharisees became smaller men the more the Lord revealed His glory.
"My Daily Meditation for the Circling Year" by John Henry Jowett
They had nothing better for this woman that had been a sinner, than the old comment of Simon the Pharisee.
"The White Rose of Langley" by Emily Sarah Holt
The scribe and the Pharisee found their opportunity.
"The Religious Experience of the Roman People" by W. Warde Fowler
So Jesus entered the Pharisee's house and sat down at the table.
"The Children's Bible" by Henry A. Sherman
It was the Pharisees He was hard on.
"Out in the Forty-Five" by Emily Sarah Holt
The pharisee thanked God that he had not committed any of them.
"Caleb in the Country" by Jacob Abbott

In poetry:

They plucked it, they rubbed it,
They blew the husks away,
Which grieved the pious pharisees
Upon the Sabbath day.
"The Boy Out Of Church" by Robert Graves
Am I saved?--for Jesus sayeth--
"Let the sinless cast a stone."
Lo the Scribes have all departed,
And the Pharisees are gone!
"Out Of The Depths" by Hanford Lennox Gordon
Scribes and Pharisees surround me:
Thou art writing in the sand:
Must I perish, Son of Mary?
Wilt thou give the stern command?
"Out Of The Depths" by Hanford Lennox Gordon
Dear Father! let me never be
Joined with the boasting Pharisee;
I have no merits of my own
But plead the suff'rings of thy Son.
"Hymn 131" by Isaac Watts
I know not if I play the Pharisee,
And if my brother after all be right;
But mine shall be the warrior's plea to thee--
Strength for the fight.
"The Warrior's Prayer" by Paul Laurence Dunbar
The priestly robe, the saintly Pharisee,
The publican, the sinner, all were there,
The doubting, sneering, questioning Sadducee,
Just risen from his seat, the scorner's chair.
"What Went Ye Out For To See?" by Nora Pembroke

In news:

the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.
The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.
The assumption is that every one of the Pharisees would have responded to the loss and finding of one sheep just as Jesus suggested.
We will never be as righteous and as holy as the scribes and Pharisees.
In Luke's gospel, Jesus draws a comparison between two men, a Pharisee and a tax collector, who both went to the temple to pray.
Are You Dating a Pharisee.
' … Jesus' audience, however, is composed of Pharisees who know the Scriptures well.
The writer of the letter "Die is cast -- for a while" made a critical remark: "The pietists and the Pharisees won.